On 27th June 2022, Ugandan SME’s joined the rest of the world to celebrate world MSME day in an event organized by Sustainable Business for Uganda, supported by the European Union and the Private Sector Foundation Uganda. SMES as categorized by Uganda Investment Authority are business enterprises which turnover between UGX 10M and UGX 10OM and employ between 5 to 100 employees. The event which was organized to recognize the significant contribution of MSMEs in the socio-economic development of Uganda was well attended with representatives from government of Uganda, the European Union, SMEs amongst other sectors.
In her welcome note which kicked off the event, Ms. Diana N. Ntamu shared insights and statistics on SMEs in Uganda and the critical role they have played in employment creation. In making her opening remarks, Ms. Caroline Adriaensen, the Head of Cooperation at the Delegation of the European Union to Uganda assured all guests of the European Union’s continued interest in fostering Uganda’s trade, and investment agenda as well as the role of SMEs and private sector development for enhanced development of Uganda.
The Chief Programmes and Projects Officer, Private Sector Foundation Uganda Ms. Damalie Ssali thanked the EU for supporting the World SME day and shared insights on social cultural challenges amongst SMEs women and youth.
Professor Wasswa Balunywa, the Makerere University Business School principle who also doubles as a scholar in management, leadership and entrepreneurship gave the day’s key note speech in a presentation on the contribution of MSMEs to Uganda’s economy assessing their, challenges and opportunities for growth.
On access to finance, Ms. Banuta elaborated on the various access to finance products available at the European Union Delegation to Uganda that support. To crown the day, a panel discussion comprising accelerators and incubators, entrepreneurs, an investee company of the EU yield fund, and a government representative shared their SME expertise with the participants. The fruitful discussion was engaging and provided participants with the opportunity to be encouraged and inspired hearing from their fellow colleagues in the SME fraternity rendering the event a value addition for organizers and participants.